“Christmas with Mercy” for local poor in three weeks

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Provided by House of Mercy


“Christmas with Mercy”, a special gifting program for the children of qualified clients of House of Mercy Food Pantry will be occurring on December 10, just three weeks away. Individuals and community organizations provide gifts as a special Christmas donation for the children who receive food and clothing aid from the House of Mercy (HOM).

Staff and volunteers of HOM are planning the gifting program for more than 350 low-income children who are eligible to receive free gifts this year by virtue of their parents taking four consecutive classes. Relying upon the kindness of the community, House of Mercy is nevertheless anticipating a shortfall of gifts in 2016.

Ann Cimini, Executive Director of HOM, states “To date, we’ve received just a handful of gifts, well behind where we were this time last year. I ask simply for everyone to imagine what your Christmases might have been like without gifts.” HOM requests all gifts be priced in the $20-25 range, so that the giving is equitable.

Children qualify for gifts based on their parent’s participation in the numerous free classes at HOM, which are available also to the greater Manassas community free of charge. The classes have included Personal Money Management, ESL, Cooking and Nutrition and faith formation.

Happily, a local scientific equipment company, C & A Scientific of Manassas, has searched their hearts and warehouse, and have donated enough science-oriented gifts for every child to receive one.

“C & A Scientific is honored to partner with House of Mercy and provide free gifts to children in Manassas through our science educational product line for kids, My First Lab,” says Matthew Swain, director of marketing at C & A Scientific. “As a family-owned company, we’ve been in the area of over 20 years. It’s an amazing opportunity we have with House of Mercy to give back to the community because we believe kids, no matter their background, should have the tools they need to discover, learn and grow as they explore the world around them. Plus, since our microscopes and science kits support STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)-based learning, the recipients of these gifts will have an opportunity to enhance their skills in core academic areas – and have fun while learning!”

Felice Hilton, Assistant Director of HOM says, “We love to welcome groups and individuals to help with the annual event. People may visit our website then follow the link to our SignUpGenius page, to sign up online for their volunteer job and time. Volunteer slots start on Wednesday December 7 and end with the event on Saturday December 10 when our client parents come to the gift distribution,” continued Hilton.

Gifts are accepted at the HOM Donation Center during regular donation hours. The Donation Center is located at 8162 Flannery Court, Manassas. Gifts must be received at HOM by Thursday, December 8. Because client children might be receiving only one gift, HOM requests the gifts to be valued in the $20-$25 range.

For more information about the House of Mercy’s “Christmas with Mercy” program, how to register as a client, or to donate financially, email help@houseofmercyva.org or call 703-659-1636.


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